6 top pharma officials get10 years for drugs adulteration killing 76

6 top pharma officials get10 years for drugs adulteration killing 76

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A Dhaka court on Monday awarded ten years’ imprisonment to every six top officials of BCI (Bangladesh) Limited for manufacturing spurious drug that took lives of at least 76 children in 1990s.
Judge M Atowar Rahman of Dhaka Judge Court pronounced the verdict in his crowded courtroom on Monday morning 23 years after the incident. The court also fined the convicts Tk 200,000.00 each and in default, they will suffer six months more in the prison.The convicts are directors Shajahan Sarker, Shamsul Haque and Nurun Nahar; Executive Director ASM Badruddoza Chowdhury, Production Manager Md Tajul Haque and Quality Control Manager Ayesha Khatun. Of them, Shajahan was present in the courtroom during the pronouncement of the verdict while others are on the run since the case was filed. The law enforcers are yet to nab them.
The charge sheet of the case against the accused was submitted on January 2, 1993 and they were indicted on August 2, 1994.
However, the process of the case remained stalled until 2011 due to a move of the accused with the High Court Division of the Supreme Court. Later, on February 20, 2011, the court directed the trial court to proceed with the process of the case.
Other companies accused of producing adulterated paracetamol syrups are Adflame Pharmaceuticals, Rid Pharmaceutical Company and Polychem Laboratories Ltd. The fifth company, City Chemical and Pharmaceutical Works Ltd was not sued, perhaps for having close connection with the then ruling BNP-Jamaat government.
On July 22 last year, the Dhaka Drug Court sentenced three officials of Adflame Pharmaceuticals to 10-year rigorous imprisonment (RI) for manufacturing spurious drug that killed at least 28 children in the early 1990s.
A study by Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University suggests, as many as 2,700 children died of adulterated Paracetamol syrup between 1982 and 1992, but it is difficult to determine how many lives were lost between 1991 and 1992. – Special Correspondent

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